My life in a box

A box arrived two days ago. That’s this box. It’s filled with the answer to my one request of Wigan Social Services since leaving their systems thirty years ago: the files record my childhood of seventeen years in the care system.


I’m opening the box in an hour or two. Tonight. There’s a film crew at my london apartment courtesy of Tigerlillyfilms. The cameraman Joe is setting up as I write this. The lighting equipment has just been delivered.

In 2010 I made a BBC Radio 4 documentary called Child of The State which documents my quest for these files.  They are here in 2015 due  to someones care and attention at Wigan Social Services.   But there is not a single family member here with me tonight. The reason there is no family member here is in this box.

The last entry in this box would’ve been thirty years ago when I was about seventeen. The first entry would’ve been forty eight years ago. Just before I was born. What happened to me then is more real to me than the cameraman in front of me now.

7 thoughts on “My life in a box

  1. It is only 17 years your life, you are great person. Inspirational for many people, live your life My Eritrean/Ethiopian brother , God Loves you , count your blessing, you found your family ,no matter how good or bad they might be. You bring joy to may people including me who never met you. Please have your own family , you will give and receive unconditional love . Don’t be alone . Learn from the box after put it away 🙂
    Jeremiah 1:5
    “Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, and before you were born I consecrated you; ”

  2. With you in spirit. Someone who should have been there with you doesn’t have your courage. Back home they say ‘kes bekes, enkulal begru yihedal’. Step by step the egg will walk on its feet. Much love.

  3. Hi lemn been in touch with you once before my partner was in oaklands and wood end I think about the same time, he’s now dead by suicide and our daughter is trying to get his records from when he was in care. I would be really grateful if you could give us any pointers on how you finally got your records. Thanks trudi partner of Darren Lovell died 6th/ fen/2012 .

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